Voices In The Week’s News: February 22, 2013

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The prospect of tar sands oil flowing through Vermont was broached, lawmakers were concerned about legal challenges to a possible GMO labeling bill, taxes of every sort were debated and UVM dropped its Canadian Studies major.

These were some of the voices in the news this week.

Oil Exec Says Line Could Be Used For Tar Sands (2/18/13) 

(Larry Wilson, CEO of Portland Pipe Line Corporation) "It is our desire to have a project of some kind to revitalize our pipeline company and the pipeline system. So we are aggressively looking at every opportunity to use these excellent assets in a way that will continue to provide for the North American energy infrastructure needs."

Lawmakers Expect Legal Challenge If GMO Label Bill Passes (2/19/13) 

(Windham Rep. Carolyn Partridge) "That’s our job here, is to create something that is defensible, that expands the state interest from beyond public curiosity to health interests to environmental interests."

Jump In Gas Prices May Force Lawmakers To Rethink Tax Plan (2/19/13) 

(Richard Watts, director of the UVM Transportation Research Center) "It may make more sense for states like Vermont, Maine has done this, to have your revenues as a percent of your gallon of gas versus a fixed fee."

Governor Shumlin Sour On Sweetened Beverage Tax (2/20/13) 

(Governor Peter Shumlin) "Philosophically I don’t believe that you change human behavior when it comes to what we eat, what we consume, through tax policy. I just don’t believe that works. I think there’s better ways to do it."

Vt. House Advances Bill To Raise Statewide Property Tax Rate (2/20/13) 

(Burlington Rep. Kurt Wright) "In Burlington we’ve had massive increases and there’s a total disconnect about who’s paying for this. So Mr. Speaker it’s clear to me that the system needs overhauling."

UVM Drops Canadian Studies Major (2/21/13)  (UVM Professor Dave Massell) "Over the last 20 years or so, we have our faculty, who can and do teach undergraduate courses in Canadian-related fields, have been so much reduced that students can no longer legitimately fulfill their requirements for a major."

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